Terrorism: Too Bad, So Sad

The following letter arrived in our mail this morning from Aviva Insurance Company of Canada, which insures our house:

Recent events have demonstrated that terrorism and the threat of terrorism, not unlike war, have become uninsurable events. Therefore, we are now excluding coverage resulting from acts of terrorism. Fire following a terrorist act will continue to be covered.

The attached endorsement defines terrorism as:

…an idealogically motivated unlawful act or acts, including but not limited to the use of violence or force or threat of violence or force committed by or on behalf of any group(s), organization(s) or government(s) for the purpose of influencing any government and/or instilling fear in the public or a section of the public.

Oddly, it later goes on to explain that we are no longer insured for:

…any activitiy or decision of a government agency or other entity to prevent, respond or terminate Terrorism.

So if someone tries to blow up our house, and the government tries to stop them, and, say, breaks down our door in the process, we’re on the hook for a replacement door, I guess.

Comments

Steven Garrity's picture
Steven Garrity on August 11, 2003 - 14:19

I got a similar letter from my insurance company. Two things come to mind: First, isn’t that what insurance is for? Second, I thought they had a surprisingly good definition of terrorism.

Alan's picture
Alan on August 11, 2003 - 15:24

This quote includes a number of problems:

…an idealogically motivated unlawful act or acts, including but not limited to the use of violence or force or threat of violence or force committed by or on behalf of any group(s), organization(s) or government(s) for the purpose of influencing any government and/or instilling fear in the public or a section of the public.

Wouldn’t it be a better definition if it was restricted to the use of violence or instilling fear? If my shipment is delayed/spoiled simply by a wildcat strike to influence government this clause covers the situation and businesses cannot claim resulting loses.

Craig Willson's picture
Craig Willson on August 11, 2003 - 15:37

There is an interesting paper at http://www.maclaw.org/0Downloa… prepared on September 17, 2001. Of particular interest is the term “clash”, which was heretofore unknown as a significant factor in North America.

Add new comment